HALL OF FAME JOCKEYS AT FUNDRAISER TOMORROW
BALTAS: THREE FOR THE MONEY IN GRADE III WILSHIRE
TRAINING LEADER O’NEILL HAS TRIO FOR SNOW CHIEF
CAUSEFORCOMMOTION TAKES ON MALES IN SAN JUAN
BOMBARD RETURNS IN SUNDAY’S AMERICAN STAKES
HALL OF FAME RIDERS HONOR PEERS AT TOMORROW’S FUNDRAISER
Fifteen Hall of Fame riders are expected to attend the sixth annual Jockeys and Jeans Fundraiser benefitting the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund at Santa Anita tomorrow. They will be here to honor the seven permanently disabled riders who attend, mix and mingle with attendees, and sign autographs.
Braulio Baeza, Steve Cauthen, Kent Desormeaux, Victor Espinoza, Pat Day, Earlie Fires, Sandy Hawley, Julie Krone, Chris McCarron, Donald Pierce, Laffit Pincay, Jr., Alex Solis, Mike Smith, Bobby Ussery and Jorge Velasquez are scheduled to be on hand.
There will be a free autograph signing from 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. in the Paddock Gardens area and a free Silent Auction for all on-track fans from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. adjacent to the autograph signing area.
Tickets starting at $65 are on sale at https://www.santaanita.com. Walk-up tickets will be available. It includes a Chandelier Room party during the races featuring a buffet and a specialty drink.
Fans can also participate in an on line auction for valuable memorabilia at this website link: https://www.32auctions.com
For more information contact Jockeys and Jeans VP Marketing Eddie Donnally at (818) 653-3711 email@example.com or Alexis Garske, Santa Anita Media Relations at Alexis.Garske@santaanita.com (626) 574-6413
BUSINESS BOOMING FOR STAKES LEADER BALTAS
Richard Baltas, the runaway leader in stakes victories at the spring portion of Santa Anita’s meet that concludes Sunday, hopes to add to his six wins in that category Saturday when he sends out three in the Grade III Wilshire Stakes for fillies and mares, three and up, at one mile on turf.
They are A Little Bit Me, Gliding By and Tapped. Baltas leads runner-up Phil D’Amato in stakes wins, 6-3; is second to Doug O’Neill in overall victories, 23-18; and leads all trainers in purse money won with $1,249,809.
A Little Bit Me captured a turf stakes sprinting at Churchill Downs on May 2 at 24-1; Gliding By also won a turf sprint, albeit an overnight event at Santa Anita April 26; while Tapped returns to turf after prompting the pace in the Grade II Santa Maria June 1 before finishing fifth.
“A Little Bit Me is coming off a five furlong stakes win and she’s ready to go, although I don’t know if a mile is the right distance, but I think it’s in her wheelhouse,” Baltas said. “Gliding By has been training very well, and Tapped is OK, too.
“Things have gone pretty well for us this meet, being second in wins and leading in money. We have a lot of business right now. I just have to continue to work hard, do the right thing, and hopefully we’ll continue to keep things going and we’ll have a bright future.”
The Wilshire, race eight with a 1 p.m. first post time:
Ollie’s Candy, Kent Desormeaux, 5-1;
Storm the Hill, Rafael Bejarano, 7-2;
Simply Breathless, Flavien Prat, 6-1;
Poster Girl, Evin Roman, 12-1;
Meal Ticket, Mike Smith, 8-1;
Achira, Martin Garcia, 20-1;
Gliding By, Mario Gutierrez, 8-1;
Don’t Blame Judy, Victor Espinoza, 20-1;
Ippodamia’s Girl, Norberto Arroyo Jr., 8-1;
A Little Bit Me, Geovanni Franco, 6-1
Tapped, Drayden Van Dyke, 6-1.
O’NEILL HAS THREE IN QUEST OF SNOW CHIEF UPSET
Doug O’Neill could add to his training lead Saturday with a victory in the $200,000 Snow Chief Stakes in which he has three morning-line longshots entered in the nine furlong turf race for California-bred or sired three-year-olds: Carnivorous, Oliver and Prodigal Son.
Currently five in front of runner-up Richard Baltas in victories, 23-18, O’Neill is in good standing for back-to-back training titles at Santa Anita, having won the winter meet.
“I like Prodigal Son going two turns,” said O’Neill assistant Leandro Mora. “He acts and trains like that’s what he really wants. I don’t have as much confidence in Carnivorous, but I think he’ll do all right. Oliver is doing really well, so all of them have a chance.
“We’re very pleased with how the meet has gone for us.”
The Snow Chief:
Our Silver Oak, Mike Smith, 5-2;
Oliver, Martin Garcia, 20-1;
Prodigal Son, Mario Gutierrez, 12-1;
Irish Heatwave, Kent Desormeaux 3-1;
Carnivorous, Abel Cedillo, 12-1;
Appreciated, Aaron Gryder, 15-1;
Desmond Doss, Joe Talamo, 4-1;
Mobou, Victor Espinoza, 15-1
Lieutenant Dan, Geovanni Franco, 3-1.
CAUSEFORCOMMOTION FACES MALES IN QUICK TURNAROUND
Eric Kruljac is trying something new with Causeforcommotion in Sunday’s Grade III San Juan Capistrano Stakes for three-year-olds and up at about 1 ¾ miles on turf: the five-year-old mare will be making her third stakes start in six weeks and be running against males for the first time in her 18-race career.
“It’s a marathon and it’s her specialty,” said the trainer, who saddled her to win the Grade III Santa Barbara Stakes by nine lengths at a mile and a half on grass May 11. As for facing males, Kruljac allowed as to how it may not be the most macho members of the species.
“If she runs the way she did in the Santa Barbara, she’ll be tough to beat,” he said.
Causeforcommotion came back two weeks after the Santa Barbara to run in the Grade I Gamely May 27, prompting the pace before finishing eighth behind monster mare Vasilika.
Kruljac was inclined to shrug that off with, “She just didn’t like Vasilika blowing by her.”
The San Juan, race eight:
Mongolian Groom, Mario Gutierrez, 7-2;
Ground Attack, Tiago Pereira, 20-1;
Ya Gotta Wanna, Norberto Arroyo Jr., 3-1;
Acclimate, Martin Garcia, 8-1;
Original Intent, Ruben Fuentez, 30-1;
Causeforcommotion, Geovanni Franco, 2-1;
Red King, Aaron Gryder, 8-1;
Oscar Dominguez, Flavien Prat, 7-2.
BOMBARD IS BACK SUNDAY IN COMPETITIVE AMERICAN STAKES
Bombard returns to the races after an absence of 11 months Sunday in the Grade III American Stakes for three-year-olds and up at a mile on turf. With seven entrees, three of them supplemental at a cost of $2,000 each, it’s a relatively salty lineup.
“I wish I had an easier spot, but I don’t,” said Richard Mandella, who trains the six-year-old War Front gelding who was out for an extended period after having a chip removed from a knee following his second by a head in the Wickerr Stakes last July 22 at Del Mar.
The American, race five: supplemental nominee
Tartini, Iggy Puglisi, 30-1;
Sharp Samurai, Victor Espinoza, 2-1;
Snazzy Dresser, Edwin Maldonado, 12-1;
supplementalnominee Law Abidin Citizen,
Tiago Pereira, 5-1;
Bombard, Flavien Prat, 4-1;
supplementalnominee River Boyne, Kent Desormeaux, 8-5;
Majestic Eagle, Rafael Bejarano, 8-1.